- Obama's January 5 Pentagon news conference reeked of
duplicity like all his pronouncements. Surrounded by Joint Chiefs of Staff,
hawkishness took center stage.
- Stressing a leaner, more agile/flexible military, he
said counterterrorism, intelligence and cyberwarfare will be emphasized
without sacrificing America's superiority against global enemies.
- So will subversion, destabilization, drone killings,
other targeted assassinations, global state terrorism, and permanent war.
- In other words, new and old tactics are featured. Strategies
are unchanged. So are imperial aims. Permanent war remains policy. Merciless
high-tech killing and destruction will be featured. Ravaging the world
one country at a time is planned.
- So is expanding the Bush Doctrine. Preemptive global
wars define it. Addressing West Point cadets in June 2003, Dick Cheney
- "If there is anyone in the world today who doubts
the seriousness of the Bush Doctrine, I would urge that person to consider
the fate of the Taliban in Afghanistan, and of Saddam Hussein's regime
- Bush was more succinct, saying "You're either with
us or against us." Neutrality's not an option. Neither are equity,
justice, rule of law principles, democratic values and peace.
- Supporters thought Obama was different. In fact, he exceeds
the worst of Bush at home and abroad. He arrogated to America the right
to confront independent regimes belligerently, replace them with client
ones, and target homeland dissenters relentlessly.
- In 2006, Bush's National Security Strategy reaffirmed
America's preemptive right to counter alleged threats. Initially unveiled
in September 2002, it asserted his "preemptive war" doctrine.
- At the time, it justified war on Iraq. It said America
doesn't "rule out the use of force before attacks occur, even if uncertainty
remains as to the time and place of the enemy's attack."
- "To forestall or prevent such hostile acts by our
adversaries, the United States will, if necessary, act preemptively in
exercising our inherent right of self-defense."
- Unaddressed was inviolable international and US law.
They require clear evidence of impending or planned attacks. Short of either,
waring preemptively or otherwise against nonbelligerent states is illegal.
- Bush attacked Afghanistan and Iraq. Obama's waging global
wars overtly and covertly, including at home.
- Abroad, Syria and Iran are prime targets. Bush's 2006
National Security Strategy highlighted Iran, saying:
- Its "regime sponsors terrorism; threatens Israel,
seeks to thwart Middle East peace; disrupts democracy in Iraq; and denies
the aspirations of its people for freedom."
- "The nuclear issue and our other concerns can ultimately
be resolved only if the Iranian regime makes the strategic decision to
change these policies, open up its political system, and afford freedom
to its people. This is the ultimate goal of US policy."
- In fact, at issue is regime change, controlling Iranian
oil and gas, redrawing the Middle East, and pursuing regional hegemony
to China and Russia's borders. Bush addressed "wars of the 21st century."
- They continue under Obama. Tactics include creating an
arc of instability, chaos and violence throughout the region to justify
- Addressing the 18th Direct Democracy conference in Feldkirch,
Austria, Law Professor Francis Boyle warned against attacking Iran, especially
with nuclear weapons.
- America already committed "acts of aggression against
Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Somalia, (and Libya) and has authorized armed,
equipped, and supplied Israel (with destructive weapons and munitions)
to commit outright genocide against Lebanon and Palestine."
- Preemptive war is illegal. So is preventive war. Bush
Doctrine policies featured them. They've "yet to be officially repealed
- Nazi lawyers claimed these prerogatives at Nuremberg.
They were rejected. Article 2 of the UN Charter requires settling international
disputes peacefully, saying:
- "All Members shall refrain in their international
relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity
or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent
with the Purposes of the United Nations."
- Only legitimate self-defense is permitted. America's
wars don't qualify. According to Boyle, they constitute "international
criminal activity (for) planning, prepar(ing), solicit(ing), and conspiracy
to commit Nuremberg crimes against peace, crimes against humanity, war
crimes, and genocide."
- In addition, "the design, research, testing, production,
manufacture, fabrication, transportation, deployment, installation, storing,
stockpil(ing), sale, and purchase and the threat to use nuclear weapons
are criminal under well-recognized principles of international law."
- Boyle stressed the urgent actions, saying:
- Otherwise, "Obama and his people could very well
set off a Third World War over Iran that has been already threatened publicly
by Bush Jr."
- He also accused NATO states "go(ing) along with
US policies" of complicity with US crimes.
- The New York Times: Cheerleading US Belligerence
- On January 5, a New York Times editorial headlined, "A
Leaner Pentagon," saying:
- Obama's new defense strategy reflects "a generally
pragmatic vision of how this country will organize and deploy its military
in the 21st century. (It features) smarter and more restrained....use of
- It means fewer ground troops, but "doesn't minimize
the fact that the world is a very dangerous place and says the country
must still be ready to fight a major land war...."
- "It argues, persuasively (for greater use of) air
power, intelligence, special operations or innovative technologies like
- Fact check
- Rule of law issues weren't mentioned. Nor was America's
responsibility for heightening world dangers. Obama's "pragmatic vision"
is Timesspeak for illegal mass high-tech killing and destruction.
- Obama wants more emphasis on "contain(ing) an increasingly
assertive Iran, and in Asia, to moderate and counterbalance China's ambitions."
- Fact check
- Unlike America, Iran hasn't attacked another country
in over 200 years and threatens none now. Neither does China. International
law affirms the principle of sovereignty and self-determination.
- All nations may freely choose their political systems.
Others are prohibited from interfering in their internal affairs, whether
democratic, authoritarian, or anything in between. America deems it a prerogative.
Times editors are supportive.
- "We understand the importance of sending a clear
message that this country is not ceding anything to" Iran, China or
- In other words, Times editors endorse strategically targeting
any nation challenging US hegemony, including by preemptive war. Cheerleading
all US wars, they ignore justification, rule of law, and other right and
- A Final Comment
- In November, Haaretz said Washington and Israel will
hold their "largest" and "most significant" ever joint
military exercise. Assistant Secretary of State Andrew Shapiro for Political-Military
Affairs confirmed it.
- Over 5,000 US and Israeli forces will be involved. Exercises
will include "simulat(ing) Israel's ballistic missile defense."
They'll also feature "urban warfare and counterterrorism."
- Moreover, Israel will be granted expedited Congressional
Notification to facilitate "faster trade of smaller, routine sales
and purchases of arms...." In fact, whatever Israel wants, it gets.
- In addition, Washington's multi-billion dollar annual
commitment to Israel will continue, despite "challenging budgetary
- US forces are being deployed to Israel for an indefinite
period. Israeli military personnel will be assigned to EUCOM, America's
Stuttgart, Germany-based European command.
- The Jerusalem Post said sophisticated US THAAD (Terminal
High Altitude Area Defense) and shipbased Aegis ballistic missile defense
systems are involved.
- They'll work together with Israel's Arrow, Patriot and
Iron Dome. They'll also further heighten tensions already too high. Targeting
Iran is involved. Confrontation ahead seems likely, no matter the potentially
- In addition, Syria is threatened. Assistant Secretary
of State for Near East Affairs Jeffrey Feltman's in Cairo to pressure Arab
League officials to report back what Washington wants to hear.
- At issue is observer mission head General Mohammed Ahmed
Mustafa al-Dabi. Instead of reporting regime violence, he said conditions
are reassuring as Assad's government is cooperating.
- Washington wants a far different assessment to justify
greater intervention. White House spokesman Jay Carney said "as sniper
fire, torture, and murder in Syria continue, it is clear that the requirements
of the Arab League protocol have not been met."
- He wants the Security Council to act, but Russia and
China will block outside intervention.
- Syria's Foreign Ministry spokesman Jihad Makdisi rightfully
accused Washington of "gross interference in the work of the Arab
League," as well as attempting "unjustified internationalization
of the situation in Syria."
- Iranian and Syrian regime change plans are longstanding.
So far, only timing issues weren't resolved. Perhaps 2012 will prove decisive.
- Since last winter, externally generated insurgents ravaged
and destabilized Syria violently. So-called Free Syria Army (FSA) extremists
and other militants are Western proxy paramilitaries. Expect them to be
involved in stepped up ground attacks ahead.
- According to FSA commander Colonel Riad al-Assad, "We
are preparing for big operations and have no faith in Arab League monitors
or their useless mission."
- In contrast, moderate opposition figures oppose outside
intervention. They want Syria's sovereignty respected.
- Washington, Israel, key NATO allies, and anti-Assad regional
states have other ideas, and that's the key problem.
- Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at
- Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and
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